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  • Police in England seized more than R44 million in crypto tokens from a 17-year-old involved in a credit card scam.
  • Lincolnshire Police said it seized 48 bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies after discovering money-laundering links in the case.
  • The teenaged boy was charged with false representation and money laundering.
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Police in an English county said they've seized more than R44 million worth of cryptocurrency from a 17-year-old boy who obtained the coins through online fraud.

Detectives from the Lincolnshire Police's cybercrime unit took possession of the digital currency in a case centred on an unnamed boy involved in an April 2020 credit card scam, the police department said in a statement Tuesday.

The seizure was one of the first and largest of its kind in Lincolnshire, a county in the East of England with a North Sea coastline.

Police confiscated 48 bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Authorities say the teen stole personal information to defraud a digital gift voucher company out of roughly £6,000. Detectives then found links to money laundering through cryptocurrency.

"Cryptocurrency is often thought, by criminals, to be an anonymous way to move funds around undetected but I'm glad that in this case, we were able to highlight that the police are now able to effectively investigate offenses of this nature," said Detective Constable Luke Casey, a cybercrime investigator with Lincolnshire Police.

The teenager was charged with fraud by false representation and money laundering and sentenced Tuesday to a youth rehabilitation centre.

He set up a site that looked like that of Love2Shop, a seller of gift vouchers, then use Google advertising to dupe people into visiting it. He admitted to money laundering and fraud worth £6,539 (some R135,000), but the value of his holdings soared in the meanwhile, and he was found to have benefited from his crimes to the tune of £2,141,720.

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